The biggest data threat to SMEs are internal lapses, such as human error and software or hardware failure, rather than external threats like hacking or natural disasters, said the group Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of a Singapore-based enterprise data management provider.
Mr Piti Pramotedham, group CEO of Kronicles Asia, cited a global benchmark study conducted by the Disaster Recovery Preparedness Council. The study revealed that 60 per cent of data loss faced by companies is due to human error, while 44 per cent is due to software or hardware failure.
Upon conducting market research, Kronicles also found that two out of five SMEs are agreeable with pricey data protection services, said the company in a press release.
Kronicles added that it has seen 80 per cent more enquiries from SMEs wanting to know more about data protection and backup services designed for them.
One way SMEs can prevent data loss is to to back up its data regularly, said Mr Pramotedham. He was responding to media enquiries last Tuesday following the launch of Kronicles' new ASSURE Data Protection as a Service suite, a data management software for SMEs operating on any device - mobile phones, tablets, laptops, desktops, across any operating system and server platforms.
Mr Pramotedham added that SMEs should have a "plan B" ready in the event that it loses its data. "It is better that you figure out now what you need to do when a crisis (hits)," he said.
Mr Pramotedham noted that while the government is trying to raise awareness and adoption of essential cyber-security practices among businesses, the onus remains with SMEs.
"(SMEs) need to be aware of the risks and the availability of solutions," Mr Pramotedham said.
Here are five steps SMEs should take to protect their data, according to Mr Pramotedham:
1. Have two copies of your data - online and in physical form.
2. Know where to find your backed-up data.
3. Make backing up your data part of your daily routine or process.
4. Practice restoring your data.
5. Figure out steps you need to take in the event that you lose your data, and document it.